Here we go! Module 5 – Working with Patterns. So the gist of this module is tension = important. Swatch your yarn. The block your yarn. Then measure your yarn.
I have only blocked a few things I’ve made and almost all were granny squares. This module recommended using cold water for blocking animal fibres. It only touched lightly on blocking though so I feel that it will come up again.
I have written and published crochet patterns before and had read enough to know the basic elements I had to include such as materials, abbreviations and the instructions by row. This module however listed out the entire anatomy of a crochet pattern and every detail to include for a professional level pattern. I picked up some useful tips such as including schematics – something I honestly just noticed on a baby vest pattern I started making a few days ago.
I also appreciated the break down of symbols in the directions like asterisks and brackets.
The highlight of this module however was the thorough and useful explanation of a crochet symbols chart. I have only just started writing patterns in symbol form and seeking symbol patterns out on Pinterest about a year ago. I do like these now that I can read them as US and UK use the same symbols e.g. X = a US single/ UK Double.
I really enjoyed this module’s assessment as I was asked to matched UK terms with their US counterparts *cracks knuckles* I got this.
It took its time this year but winter has arrived in Sydney. Along with the comfy knits, cozy coffee dates and sweet children in mittens comes sniffy noses, chapped lips and frozen little fingers on dreary days.
Here I’ve collected the recipes, patterns and ideas that get me and my family through winter that I’d like to share with others. All these can be found on my Winter Essentials Pinterest board which I love to add to whenever I come across something new.
I love the Burt’s Bees lip balm but hate the price tag. Although the ingredients to get started with this recipe can cost a bit they last and last. The ingredients for 2015’s Christmas presents lasted all through the winter and must have produced hundreds of homemade beauty products. I’ve found Karrie’s recipe sets in pots as well as cleaned out chap stick tubes.
We all reach for the Vick’s when the family is sick. I’ve joined the ranks of mums who swear by vick’s on a little one’s feet covered by clean cotton socks to stop night time coughs but there are two drawbacks to Vick’s – 1) price per jar 2) I don’t know exactly what’s in it. And with a husband riddled with allergies from dust to grass to shell fish, I’d rather I wrote the ingredient list until our little one is a little older.
Here is Everyday Roots wonderful recipe for homemade, all natural vapour rub.
Quick and easy is my favourite kind of crochet.These wide and warm headbands work up quickly in double crochet, are dead simple for beginners and make thoughtful little gifts. I made matching ones for a friend’s daughters (I’ll have to make another soon as she has baby girl #3 on the way!) and my own Little Lottie loves her blue ‘Elsa’ headband.
Crocheting mittens took me a bit of practice but this somewhat famous pattern that pops up all over Pinterest helped me out a lot. Brenda’s pattern comes in little kids, older kids and women’s sizes and once you’ve gotten used to it, is easy to customize.
Everything about this sewing pattern is a big YES for me.
Cheap? Yes. Easy? Yes. Quick? Yes. Can I do it in the Disney print my kid picked out? Yes.
You will have to register for email newsletters for the template PDFs but it’s worth it (and the newsletters are actually great). This pattern is by Denise, is great for keeping little fingers warm and it’s not a disaster if one is lost at preschool or the park. I fiddled with the wrist seam and added a blue ribbon drawstring on the last pair I did.
Of course my favourite crochet queen was going to feature on this list. The woman who’s videos reawakened my love of crochet and turbo charged my skills with her Youtube tutorials created perhaps the best video tutorial series on beanies ever.
This link leads to the 12 months – 3 years size beanie as that is the size I tend to make the most however she has written patterns for 0-6 months, 6-12 months, 3yrs- pre teen, teen – small ladies and also ladies to men’s sizes as well. You must register or log in to download the pattern or head to Laura’s youtube channel for the full tutorial.
Unfortunately I only found this pattern AFTER I had spent $10 on one very similar beanie in Cotton On Kids. So cute, not too fiddly and the colour combinations are wide. I already have a request for a purple and pink bunny (or a “Twilight Sparkle Bunny hat” as little Lottie put it).
I make my own little heart shaped fleece rice bags as hand warmers for our cold morning commutes. The best all round article on making your own can be found on TipNut.com. The lady behind TipNut doesn’t share her name but her site has been around for 10 years (!) and is a treasure trove of useful household articles.
Hot Toddies & Hot Chocolate
I got the flu the week before my wedding. An English friend took one look at miserable and panicked me and immediately prescribed hot toddies. The basic ingredients are simple; hot water, lemon, honey, brandy or whiskey, but everyone has their own variation. This is one version I whip up the most although if I have them on hand, mine usually includes cinnamon and cloves.
I agree with Elena who wrote this recipe 100%. Hot chocolate should be a rich indulgence that warms you to the very depths. Her recipe is everything I expect from a hot chocolate; thick, creamy, rich and topped with cream.